Primary File An Examination of Who Is to Blame for a Hostile Work Environment

Charles P. Wilson, Shirley A. Wilson, Harsh K. Luthar
January 1, 2016
North America
Ethics & Social Justice, Human Resources & Organizational Behavior
3 pages
personne/OB, policy, strategy, ethics, human resource managament, Diversity, cultural studies
Student Price: 
$4.00 (€3.7)
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This descriptive critical incident describes events which took place within the Philadelphia Police Department which resulted in a federal lawsuit for a hostile work environment. The incident focuses on the comments and online activities of members of the department, and on the impact of those comments and activities on racial minorities within the department and on the community at large. Students are asked to discuss the role of the police department in this situation, and whether the department bears responsibility for the online activities of its members and the perceived hostile work environment that resulted.

Learning Outcomes: 
  1. Analyze the various components of what comprises hostile work environments based on race
  2. Evaluate and predict the extent of employee freedom of speech as it relates to various postings on the website
  3. Examine the effects of racially biased attitudes and speech on minority and dominant culture employees, and the impact of those attitudes and that speech on organizational effectiveness
  4. Assess the organization’s responsibility to investigate and correct complaints of racebased harassment
  5. Create a policy for use of social media in the workplace